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Reply 40 of 82, by Xero

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i was actually considering buying one of these boards, as its one of the few native-tualatin boards with an ISA slot that you can still seemingly find for sale used, but i ended up tualatin-modding slotkets instead.

there is definitely a weird cutoff between pentium 3/4 era stuff, its even weirder when you consider the i840 / i850 chipset - this basically was the transition from p3/p4, and it was basically rooted in an rdram SMP pentium 3 chipset. I think that's why sticking tualatins in a i840 board was so appealing to me. It's sort of a weird hybrid of both worlds. It's also apparently a fools mission, but I'm up for the challenge. I think the big thing missing in P3 is SSE2 extensions, and there's a lot more modern stuff that chokes hard without them. You can definitely pair 6800GT with P3's but it will be CPU bound at some point. It can still provide some benefit, its just not as big without the better cpu.

Reply 41 of 82, by enaiel

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The Serpent Rider wrote on 2022-01-26, 04:27:

Depends which Tualatin model and how far you can overclock it. Should be fine mostly, but some games weren't comfortable on aging P3 CPUs with SDRAM (without overclocking).

I plan to use a SL6BX Pentium III-S 1.266GHz 512/133 Tualitin , but I don't plan on overclocking it.

Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2022-01-26, 04:50:

IMO, the ideal cutoff point for Win98 gaming is 2001. Anything made in 2002 and onward is better played on a WinXP rig, using much more powerful hardware.

Hmm, if that's the case, the Tualatin may not buy me much.

Xero wrote on 2022-01-27, 00:30:

i was actually considering buying one of these boards, as its one of the few native-tualatin boards with an ISA slot that you can still seemingly find for sale used, but i ended up tualatin-modding slotkets instead.

there is definitely a weird cutoff between pentium 3/4 era stuff, its even weirder when you consider the i840 / i850 chipset - this basically was the transition from p3/p4, and it was basically rooted in an rdram SMP pentium 3 chipset. I think that's why sticking tualatins in a i840 board was so appealing to me. It's sort of a weird hybrid of both worlds. It's also apparently a fools mission, but I'm up for the challenge. I think the big thing missing in P3 is SSE2 extensions, and there's a lot more modern stuff that chokes hard without them. You can definitely pair 6800GT with P3's but it will be CPU bound at some point. It can still provide some benefit, its just not as big without the better cpu.

I didn't even know that hybrid world existed! A lot of people on Vogons are into making challenging builds - me, I'm looking for something that Just Works TM. I want to spend more time playing games and less time tinkering 😀

#1 VIA C3 Ezra-T 1.0GHz/MSI MS-6368/Voodoo2+ViRGE GX/SBPro2+YMF744+AWE64+SC-7
#2 Pentium III-S Tualatin 1.40GHz/QDI A10T/Voodoo3 3000+GF4 Ti4200/Audigy+AU8830+SC-50

Reply 42 of 82, by enaiel

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I ran a few benchmarks in Win98:
VIA C3 Nehemiah 1.2GHz + 500MB RAM + GF4 Ti4200 @ 1024x768x32

  • 3DMark2001 SE: 4719
  • 3DMark2000: 5956
  • 3DMark99 MAX: 29

I guess the 3DMark2001 and 3DMark2000 scores look okay, considering the CPU. But what the hell is happening with the 3DMark99 score???? I tried disabling VSync but it doesn't seem to help. The tests seem to play fine, but they don't seem to register any FPS. Any ideas what could be causing this?

#1 VIA C3 Ezra-T 1.0GHz/MSI MS-6368/Voodoo2+ViRGE GX/SBPro2+YMF744+AWE64+SC-7
#2 Pentium III-S Tualatin 1.40GHz/QDI A10T/Voodoo3 3000+GF4 Ti4200/Audigy+AU8830+SC-50

Reply 43 of 82, by The Serpent Rider

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I plan to use a SL6BX Pentium III-S 1.266GHz 512/133 Tualitin , but I don't plan on overclocking it.

I suppose you could play some 2003 games on that. Late q3 engine games like Soldier of Fortune II will run just fine. Homeworld 2 will also work fine.

Get up, come on get down with the sickness
Open up your hate, and let it flow into me

Reply 44 of 82, by mothergoose729

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enaiel wrote on 2022-02-02, 04:13:
I ran a few benchmarks in Win98: VIA C3 Nehemiah 1.2GHz + 500MB RAM + GF4 Ti4200 @ 1024x768x32 […]
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I ran a few benchmarks in Win98:
VIA C3 Nehemiah 1.2GHz + 500MB RAM + GF4 Ti4200 @ 1024x768x32

  • 3DMark2001 SE: 4719
  • 3DMark2000: 5956
  • 3DMark99 MAX: 29

I guess the 3DMark2001 and 3DMark2000 scores look okay, considering the CPU. But what the hell is happening with the 3DMark99 score???? I tried disabling VSync but it doesn't seem to help. The tests seem to play fine, but they don't seem to register any FPS. Any ideas what could be causing this?

I have the same issue. No idea.

Reply 45 of 82, by bloodem

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enaiel wrote on 2022-02-02, 04:13:

I guess the 3DMark2001 and 3DMark2000 scores look okay, considering the CPU. But what the hell is happening with the 3DMark99 score???? I tried disabling VSync but it doesn't seem to help. The tests seem to play fine, but they don't seem to register any FPS. Any ideas what could be causing this?

3DMark99 bug. It does not detect the CPU as having SSE, so it doesn't run the P3 optimized code. Instead, it falls back to Pentium MMX/FPU optimizations which for some reason results in a weird behavior: even though the FPS is very high, the reported FPS is "0" (you can clearly see this during the first two benchmarks).

3DMark99 has the same issue with modern CPUs like the AMD Zen 2 and Zen 3 architectures.

The Ezra-T, on the other hand, does not have this issue, because it has the AMD 3DNow! extensions and 3DMark99 properly detects it and runs the 3DNow! optimized code.

2 x PGA132 / 5 x Socket 3 / 9 x Socket 7 / 12 x SS7 / 1 x Socket 8 / 14 x Slot 1 / 5 x Slot A
5 x Socket 370 / 8 x Socket A / 2 x Socket 478 / 2 x Socket 754 / 3 x Socket 939 / 7 x LGA775 / 1 x LGA1155
Current rig: Ryzen 5 3600X
Backup rig: Core i7 7700k

Reply 46 of 82, by enaiel

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bloodem wrote on 2022-02-02, 17:23:

3DMark99 bug. It does not detect the CPU as having SSE, so it doesn't run the P3 optimized code. Instead, it falls back to Pentium MMX/FPU optimizations which for some reason results in a weird behavior: even though the FPS is very high, the reported FPS is "0" (you can clearly see this during the first two benchmarks).

3DMark99 has the same issue with modern CPUs like the AMD Zen 2 and Zen 3 architectures.

The Ezra-T, on the other hand, does not have this issue, because it has the AMD 3DNow! extensions and 3DMark99 properly detects it and runs the 3DNow! optimized code.

Thank you so much for the explanation. It was driving me crazy!

#1 VIA C3 Ezra-T 1.0GHz/MSI MS-6368/Voodoo2+ViRGE GX/SBPro2+YMF744+AWE64+SC-7
#2 Pentium III-S Tualatin 1.40GHz/QDI A10T/Voodoo3 3000+GF4 Ti4200/Audigy+AU8830+SC-50

Reply 47 of 82, by enaiel

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Ran some game demos as benchmarks. It's clear that the Nehemiah is fine till around 2001, and then really struggles with 2002's UT2003. Going to now swap the Nehemiah for a Tualatin CPU and compare.

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Edit: For some reason, the image above is not showing up inline?

#1 VIA C3 Ezra-T 1.0GHz/MSI MS-6368/Voodoo2+ViRGE GX/SBPro2+YMF744+AWE64+SC-7
#2 Pentium III-S Tualatin 1.40GHz/QDI A10T/Voodoo3 3000+GF4 Ti4200/Audigy+AU8830+SC-50

Reply 48 of 82, by bloodem

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From what I'm seeing, you are running the Nehemiah on a VIA based motherboard.
The CPU is up to 30% faster on an Intel 440BX motherboard. (7400 points in 3DMark 2000 on a Gigabyte GA-6BXC motherboard with a GeForce 2 Ti 64 MB video card).
That being said, your conclusion is correct - this CPU allows for decent framerates in games released in 2001 or earlier.

2 x PGA132 / 5 x Socket 3 / 9 x Socket 7 / 12 x SS7 / 1 x Socket 8 / 14 x Slot 1 / 5 x Slot A
5 x Socket 370 / 8 x Socket A / 2 x Socket 478 / 2 x Socket 754 / 3 x Socket 939 / 7 x LGA775 / 1 x LGA1155
Current rig: Ryzen 5 3600X
Backup rig: Core i7 7700k

Reply 49 of 82, by mothergoose729

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A Tualatin or other high performance P3 would just about carry you to 2003, at the cost of some DOS speed compatibility. With two slotket adapters you could pretty easily CPU swap them in and out based on what you needed... provided you have two slotket adapters ofc and a compatible motherboard.

2001 is about the cutoff for windows 98 anyhow IMO. I use an XP build for anything 2002 and later. DOS 1981 - Windows 2001 is pretty good coverage for one CPU I'd say.

Reply 50 of 82, by enaiel

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bloodem wrote on 2022-02-03, 11:19:

From what I'm seeing, you are running the Nehemiah on a VIA based motherboard.
The CPU is up to 30% faster on an Intel 440BX motherboard. (7400 points in 3DMark 2000 on a Gigabyte GA-6BXC motherboard with a GeForce 2 Ti 64 MB video card).
That being said, your conclusion is correct - this CPU allows for decent framerates in games released in 2001 or earlier.

A 30% performance difference is crazy! Maybe I should look for a 440BX S370 motherboard then. Any recommendations? I don't have any Slot-1 Slotkets, but I did recently get my hands on a Lin-Lin adapter.

mothergoose729 wrote on 2022-02-03, 12:40:

A Tualatin or other high performance P3 would just about carry you to 2003, at the cost of some DOS speed compatibility. With two slotket adapters you could pretty easily CPU swap them in and out based on what you needed... provided you have two slotket adapters ofc and a compatible motherboard.

2001 is about the cutoff for windows 98 anyhow IMO. I use an XP build for anything 2002 and later. DOS 1981 - Windows 2001 is pretty good coverage for one CPU I'd say.

I guess I should clarify what games I want to play on this PC. The main reason for building this PC is to play games from around 1998 to 2003 that do not work on my current Win10 gaming PC. In fact, they stopped working after upgrading to WinXP SP3:

1998 Thief
1999 System Shock II
2000 Thief II
2000 NFS: Porsche Unleashed
2001 F1 2001
2002 FIFA 2002
2002 NFS: Hot Pursuit 2
2003 Splinter Cell

I think the only game in this list that the Nehemiah really struggles with is Splinter Cell. Not sure if the Tualatin will do much better, but it's probably going to be the deciding factor for me.

#1 VIA C3 Ezra-T 1.0GHz/MSI MS-6368/Voodoo2+ViRGE GX/SBPro2+YMF744+AWE64+SC-7
#2 Pentium III-S Tualatin 1.40GHz/QDI A10T/Voodoo3 3000+GF4 Ti4200/Audigy+AU8830+SC-50

Reply 51 of 82, by mothergoose729

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A higher performance p3 would definitely perform better. Even a 1ghz coppermine, which is a lot easier to find a compatible board for, would be a good 40% faster.

Something else to think about would be a p4 or athlon build if later windows 98 is the focus.

Reply 52 of 82, by bloodem

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enaiel wrote on 2022-02-03, 19:12:

A 30% performance difference is crazy! Maybe I should look for a 440BX S370 motherboard then. Any recommendations? I don't have any Slot-1 Slotkets, but I did recently get my hands on a Lin-Lin adapter.

My favorite 440BX motherboard to pair with VIA C3 Nehemiah / Ezra-T is by far the Gigabyte GA-6BXC rev 2.0 (rev 1.9 works great too, if you're comfortable with replacing the HIP6004ACB voltage regulator chip, since this one doesn't support voltages lower than 1.8V ).
The nice thing about this motherboard (besides being both fast and stable) is the ability to control the FSB frequency through software, making it extremely flexible - especially when paired with a VIA C3 CPU.

2 x PGA132 / 5 x Socket 3 / 9 x Socket 7 / 12 x SS7 / 1 x Socket 8 / 14 x Slot 1 / 5 x Slot A
5 x Socket 370 / 8 x Socket A / 2 x Socket 478 / 2 x Socket 754 / 3 x Socket 939 / 7 x LGA775 / 1 x LGA1155
Current rig: Ryzen 5 3600X
Backup rig: Core i7 7700k

Reply 53 of 82, by Xero

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enaiel wrote on 2022-02-02, 03:56:

I didn't even know that hybrid world existed! A lot of people on Vogons are into making challenging builds - me, I'm looking for something that Just Works TM. I want to spend more time playing games and less time tinkering 😀

I totally get that, like, I still strive for stability with my mods, not pushing limits/overclocking, I hate nothing more than chasing ghosts. Though I can admit I'm one of the weirdos that enjoys the challenge / achievement of pulling off a successful mod - I also do enjoy the notion of something that "just works." This board you have was interesting to me for that reason - it has a lot of options, stock. Though I guess it's probably not the fastest P3 chipset as others seem to be mentioning, but i mean, none of us are using this retro hardware to be "the fastest", so, I always find it's more about what the end goal is - I'd be trying to exploit the versatility of the ISA slots + the multiplier adjustment abilities of the via c3 for dos with this build first and foremost, as opposed to trying to push this board to it's very limits, probably not the right board for that from the sound of things. I have been playing around with some more graphics cards in machines of this era - I'm finding the FX series to be about the absolute highest that makes sense - i do have a 6800gt that works too, but it seems a bit wasteful in terms of being cpu bound. On the flip side, if I was targetting older DOS stuff too, I'd probably want a TNT2 in there.

Reply 54 of 82, by pentiumspeed

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enaiel wrote on 2022-02-03, 19:12:
A 30% performance difference is crazy! Maybe I should look for a 440BX S370 motherboard then. Any recommendations? I don't have […]
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bloodem wrote on 2022-02-03, 11:19:

From what I'm seeing, you are running the Nehemiah on a VIA based motherboard.
The CPU is up to 30% faster on an Intel 440BX motherboard. (7400 points in 3DMark 2000 on a Gigabyte GA-6BXC motherboard with a GeForce 2 Ti 64 MB video card).
That being said, your conclusion is correct - this CPU allows for decent framerates in games released in 2001 or earlier.

A 30% performance difference is crazy! Maybe I should look for a 440BX S370 motherboard then. Any recommendations? I don't have any Slot-1 Slotkets, but I did recently get my hands on a Lin-Lin adapter.

mothergoose729 wrote on 2022-02-03, 12:40:

A Tualatin or other high performance P3 would just about carry you to 2003, at the cost of some DOS speed compatibility. With two slotket adapters you could pretty easily CPU swap them in and out based on what you needed... provided you have two slotket adapters ofc and a compatible motherboard.

2001 is about the cutoff for windows 98 anyhow IMO. I use an XP build for anything 2002 and later. DOS 1981 - Windows 2001 is pretty good coverage for one CPU I'd say.

I guess I should clarify what games I want to play on this PC. The main reason for building this PC is to play games from around 1998 to 2003 that do not work on my current Win10 gaming PC. In fact, they stopped working after upgrading to WinXP SP3:

1998 Thief
1999 System Shock II
2000 Thief II
2000 NFS: Porsche Unleashed
2001 F1 2001
2002 FIFA 2002
2002 NFS: Hot Pursuit 2
2003 Splinter Cell

I think the only game in this list that the Nehemiah really struggles with is Splinter Cell. Not sure if the Tualatin will do much better, but it's probably going to be the deciding factor for me.

What? These games quit working after upgrading to windows XP SP3?
How come?
This is what I'm having in mind to have old games for XP SP3.

Cheers,

Great Northern aka Canada.

Reply 55 of 82, by mothergoose729

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Thief and Thief 2 use 8 bit textures and have various problems with even geforce fx cards. I don't think it has anything to do with XP3. Of course there are community patches that fix all of that.

Most or all of the games can be made to run one way or another. Splinter cell has a lot of graphical issues. You can play it, but the lighting and effects are only exactly right on geforce 4 or fx cards, and I think even then only at 640x480 resolution. It's just a bad port though so it has problems on any computer. If you care about the game IMO you want the OG Xbox version.

Reply 56 of 82, by Joseph_Joestar

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mothergoose729 wrote on 2022-02-07, 00:13:

Thief and Thief 2 use 8 bit textures and have various problems with even geforce fx cards. I don't think it has anything to do with XP3. Of course there are community patches that fix all of that.

Do you have an example where the lack of 8-bit paletted textures causes visual differences in the Thief games?

From my research, Thief 2 is missing the stars in the night sky on all Nvidia cards, but that's a separate and unrelated issue, since those same stars render correctly on ATi and Matrox cards, both of which don't support 8-bit paletted textures. More info in this thread.

Splinter cell has a lot of graphical issues. You can play it, but the lighting and effects are only exactly right on geforce 4 or fx cards, and I think even then only at 640x480 resolution.

According to this video by Phil, the original Splinter Cell only renders 100% correctly on GeForce3/4 cards. The rendering on FX cards is almost as good, but it's still missing a few details. Resolution doesn't matter, though you'll get poor performance in anything higher than 800x600 on a GeForce3/4 when all the visual settings are maxed out.

PC#1: Pentium MMX 166 / Soyo SY-5BT / S3 Trio64V+ / Voodoo1 / OPTi 82C930 / AWE64 Gold / SC-155
PC#2: AthlonXP 1700+ / Abit KT7A / Voodoo3 / SBLive / Vortex2
PC#3: Athlon64 3000+ / Asus K8V-MX / GeForce4 / Audigy1
PC#4: i5-3550P / MSI Z77A-G43 / GTX 650Ti / X-Fi

Reply 57 of 82, by enaiel

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Xero wrote on 2022-02-06, 19:36:

I have been playing around with some more graphics cards in machines of this era - I'm finding the FX series to be about the absolute highest that makes sense - i do have a 6800gt that works too, but it seems a bit wasteful in terms of being cpu bound. On the flip side, if I was targetting older DOS stuff too, I'd probably want a TNT2 in there.

I chose the GF4 Ti4200 as it is the best option to run the Win98 games listed above, as well for it's good DOS compatibility. I have a FX5500, but it needs DirectX 9 and higher NVIDIA drivers, which would probably break some compatibility.

pentiumspeed wrote on 2022-02-06, 22:16:

What? These games quit working after upgrading to windows XP SP3?
How come?
This is what I'm having in mind to have old games for XP SP3.

mothergoose729 wrote on 2022-02-07, 00:13:

Thief and Thief 2 use 8 bit textures and have various problems with even geforce fx cards. I don't think it has anything to do with XP3. Of course there are community patches that fix all of that.

Most or all of the games can be made to run one way or another. Splinter cell has a lot of graphical issues. You can play it, but the lighting and effects are only exactly right on geforce 4 or fx cards, and I think even then only at 640x480 resolution. It's just a bad port though so it has problems on any computer. If you care about the game IMO you want the OG Xbox version.

Truthfully speaking, it may have not been WinXP SP3 that broke the games. During that period, I was constantly upgrading everything: OS, drivers, CPU, RAM, GPU, motherboard even. Anything to squeeze maximum performance to be able to play the latest games. It 's very much possible that any one of the following upgrades broke those games:

  • WinXP upgrade from SP2 to SP3
  • NVIDIA driver version > 45.23
  • Latest DirectX 9.0c version
  • CPU freq > 2 GHz
  • RAM > 2 GB
  • GPU upgrade from GF3 Ti200 to 9600XT and then 7950GT

But in my mind, it all broke when I upgraded to WinXP SP3 😀

#1 VIA C3 Ezra-T 1.0GHz/MSI MS-6368/Voodoo2+ViRGE GX/SBPro2+YMF744+AWE64+SC-7
#2 Pentium III-S Tualatin 1.40GHz/QDI A10T/Voodoo3 3000+GF4 Ti4200/Audigy+AU8830+SC-50

Reply 58 of 82, by enaiel

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Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2022-02-07, 01:14:

From my research, Thief 2 is missing the stars in the night sky on all Nvidia cards, but that's a separate and unrelated issue, since those same stars render correctly on ATi and Matrox cards, both of which don't support 8-bit paletted textures. More info in this thread.

According to this video by Phil, the original Splinter Cell only renders 100% correctly on GeForce3/4 cards. The rendering on FX cards is almost as good, but it's still missing a few details. Resolution doesn't matter, though you'll get poor performance in anything higher than 800x600 on a GeForce3/4 when all the visual settings are maxed out.

From the thread and video, the GF4 Ti4200 + Voodoo 2/3 would be the best combination to run these games from 1998 to 2003 on Win98. Which was my original intention before my Voodoo3 stopped working. Still looking for a replacement 🙁

#1 VIA C3 Ezra-T 1.0GHz/MSI MS-6368/Voodoo2+ViRGE GX/SBPro2+YMF744+AWE64+SC-7
#2 Pentium III-S Tualatin 1.40GHz/QDI A10T/Voodoo3 3000+GF4 Ti4200/Audigy+AU8830+SC-50

Reply 59 of 82, by Xero

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enaiel wrote on 2022-02-07, 15:42:
Xero wrote on 2022-02-06, 19:36:

I have been playing around with some more graphics cards in machines of this era - I'm finding the FX series to be about the absolute highest that makes sense - i do have a 6800gt that works too, but it seems a bit wasteful in terms of being cpu bound. On the flip side, if I was targetting older DOS stuff too, I'd probably want a TNT2 in there.

I chose the GF4 Ti4200 as it is the best option to run the Win98 games listed above, as well for it's good DOS compatibility. I have a FX5500, but it needs DirectX 9 and higher NVIDIA drivers, which would probably break some compatibility.

Ah, yeah, that's a good point I wasn't considering for compatibility with older stuff. I have a socket 7 k6-3+ build with a pci tnt2 m64 that can handle some of that "in-between" stuff, but now you've got me thinking I should track down a Ti4x00 for these 440BX motherboards I'm supposed to be getting this week...hah! I'm planning to do something very similar with one of them, the other I might purposely slow down to nothing with an old pentium 2 or some-such. I actually had a ti4200 back in the day, I don't entirely recall which PC I had it in or where it ultimately ended up though....I did read reliability on the bigger 4600s isn't so great all these years later though.

enaiel wrote on 2022-02-07, 15:42:
Truthfully speaking, it may have not been WinXP SP3 that broke the games. During that period, I was constantly upgrading everyth […]
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Truthfully speaking, it may have not been WinXP SP3 that broke the games. During that period, I was constantly upgrading everything: OS, drivers, CPU, RAM, GPU, motherboard even. Anything to squeeze maximum performance to be able to play the latest games. It 's very much possible that any one of the following upgrades broke those games:

  • WinXP upgrade from SP2 to SP3
  • NVIDIA driver version > 45.23
  • Latest DirectX 9.0c version
  • CPU freq > 2 GHz
  • RAM > 2 GB
  • GPU upgrade from GF3 Ti200 to 9600XT and then 7950GT

But in my mind, it all broke when I upgraded to WinXP SP3 😀

🤣 yes I feel this pain, this is me trying to debug stability issues after a BIOS modification/CPU swap while simultaneously swapping video and sound cards and upgrading ram, all with new drivers, in my case, on windows 98. but ya the instability issues were definitely caused by.......that thing.